Very Strong and dangerous earthquake near Daressalam, Tanzania - August 12, 2020

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Update August 13, 15:18 UTC
A moderate aftershock was felt on Thursday. More information.

A very strong dangerous earthquake was felt along the coast of Tanzania on Wednesday evening. According to USGS the epicenter was located about 80 kilometer south-east of Dar es Salaam. Moderate intensities were recorded across Daressalam and on Zanzibar island. However, due to the distance between epicenter and coast, the impact of the quake will be reduced. Minor to moderate damage (cracked walls, etc.) is still likely in coastal areas of Pwani region. People in this area should also expect an aftershock sequence. There is no tsunami threat.

Weak intensities were also felt in parts of Kenya, especially around Mombasa. No damage should be expected there.

Earthquakes along the coast of Tanzania are relatively rare and today's event has been the strongest in decades. The seismic activity there still results from the tectonic processes along the Eastern African Rift Valley, although it runs further inland.

Most important Earthquake Data:

Magnitude : 6

Local Time (conversion only below land) : Unknown

GMT/UTC Time : 2020-08-12 17:13:15

Depth (Hypocenter) : 25 km

Depth and Magnitude updates in the list below.

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SRC Location UTC Date/time M D INFO
USGS Tanzania Aug 12 17:13 6.0 15 MAP
GEOFON Tanzania Aug 12 17:13 6.0 25 MAP I Felt It INFO
  • NAIROBI - Very weak shaking
  • mombasa - Weak shaking
  • Zanzibar - Light shaking
  • Morogoro - 3-5 seconds No damage
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Dar Es Salaam - Well it's lasted like maybe 10 seconds the bed was shakin and the closet and everything else but a glass was broken so we knew they was an earthquake
  • Dar es salaam - Like someone was behind my chair shaking it
  • Kariakoo - It felt for few seconds , no damages to the property.
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Dar Es Salaam - Everything was shaking, could feel everything shaking around me. Very scary and unsettling.
  • Dar es salaam - Moderate shaking
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Dar es salaam - The whole building was slightly swaying, this is entirely new to most residents here atleast not since sept 10th 2016. It lasted maybe 10-20 seconds and has since stopped.
  • Kinondoni - Was sitting doing some work on my laptop on top of a table when I sensed slight shaking and then second round ground shaking and a little glassware rumbling.
  • Mavoko - No damage. Lasted about 30 seconds, just shaking. I could feel it while seated on my chair. My housemates felt it too.
  • Mombasa - Strong shaking
  • Msasani - Lasted les than 5sec. The whole house shaked. Nothing felt.
  • Dar Es Salaam - Between 10-12 seconds, intense in the first few seconds, the whole floor and the tables were shaking. Bottles of water showing more of the shake but it was very unsettling and heavy for few seconds before it tapered down.
  • liwale - I have heard like a cat is up on the silling n the bed was slight shaking
  • Dar-Es-Salaam - I and my colleague were siting in our office when I felt lightheaded and dizzines like I was being swifeled mid air. We got scared and run out because Were ground floor of the building. Alhamd Lillaah it was light tremor
  • Mombasa - Light shaking
  • Kunduchi, Dar es Salaam - I was sat on the floor rug, felt the floor go wobbly, then the windows rattled, lasted a few seconds
  • Mombasa - Very brief (few seconds) & light shaking. A second even lighter and shorter tremor minutes later. Some people didn't feel them at all. No damage.
  • Dar es Salaam - 2nd floor building, my bed was swaying lightly, and i felt like my body was moving ad well. But this only lasted around 6 seconds or so.
  • Dar es salaam - Shaking lasted about 1-2 minutes. Many people left buildings in a panic
  • Dar es salaam - I was sitting on my Sofa typing something on the laptop then suddenly felt like my Sofa was vibrating then the blinds were really swinging but no damages
  • Dar es salaam - 10 sec. No damage
  • Zanzibar, Matemwe - lasted about 6 to 8 seconds
  • Dar es Salaam - It was only for like 30 seconds but there was absolutely no damages just slight shaking of the floor and the cars parked outside.
  • Dar es salaam - Felt it for around 30 seconds, started with shaking candle holders, stronger shaking chair and bench and table and then became weak. We were sitting outside with 3 persons. For it felt as if some was kicking/ shaking the bench.
  • Dar es Salaam - Moderate shaking
  • Dar es Salaam - No damage. Sitting at a coach and felt I shake/move - approx 5-10 seconds.
  • dar Essalaam - my whole bed was shaking i thought someone was there but then i saw the door in front of me shaking as well and realized it was an earth quack
  • Mombasa - About 45 seconds
  • Nairobi - Lasted for a few seconds I was seated on the couch when I felt it shaking lightly
  • Dar es salaam - The building was shaking for a moment. It stopped for a second and then shook strongly .
  • Dar es Salaam - No property damaged, 15-30 secs maximum, less than a minute, heavy objects shaked very strongly including chandelier
  • Dar Es Salaam - Felt the shake, it was like a big plane was passing next to the window, but there was no plane ! It lasted a few seconds.
  • mombasa - Moderate shaking
  • Dar es salaam - Moderate shaking
  • Mtwapa - Strong tremor for 3 sec
  • Dar es salaam - Strong shaking
  • Tanga - Weak shaking
  • Dar es salaam - Strong shaking
  • Dar es Salaam - Strong shaking
  • Dar es Salaam - It was strong tremor n felt it again same type within seconds like somebody shacking my sofa!
  • Dar es salaam - Light shaking
  • Dar Es Salaam, - I was on bed, it felt kind of vibrating or someone banging it . Lasted less that 3 second. After the news I knew it was a quake. Photos on wall moved.
  • Dar es salaam - Moderate shaking
  • Dar es salaam - About 3-5 seconds it was shaking and window of bathroom was shaking the most
  • Dar es salaam -
  • Dar es salaam - Moderate shaking
  • Dar es salaam - I was in office, when i sense my desk and floor vibrating, then noticed the AC was shaking.
  • Dar es Salaam - We were seated at dining table and suddenly the table, the chairs we were seated on, plates and crockery on table started to shake. It could have lasted 10 to 20 seconds maybe, but everyone felt it. Before we realised its earthquake, it was gone, but it left most of the people at home still shaking with fear!!!
  • Dar es Salaam - Strong shaking
  • Dar es salaam - Strong shaking
  • Dar es salaam - Felt the tremors for about 20 - 25 seconds , fan started shaking, window glasses started to shake, it was a strong tremor which made the whole building shake. We immediately ran down on the road Using the stairs.
  • Dar es salaam - Light shaking
  • Dar es salaam - Like seven seconds. It was my first experience it was Like a house is floating
  • Dar es Salaam - On the 17th floor penthouse it was felt shaking side by side about 6 inch roughly
  • Mombasa - Weak shaking
  • Dar es salaam - Was studying when i felt the floor vibrate. Was confused if it was a quake or something else
  • Changamwe - Shaking lasted 5 - 10 seconds. No damage.
  • Dar es salaam - Light shaking
  • City - The whole building started to shake and the shake was intensive lasted for 30/45 seconds
  • Dar es salaam - It lasted for 5-10 sec I could hear the bed swinging and the chair shaking but no damage to property
  • Dar es Salaam - Light shaking
  • Dar es salam - Felt like the whole building was shaking n felt dizzy
  • Dar es Salaam - Strong shaking
  • Dar Es Salaam - All is fine chandeliers were shaking no damage just vibrates
  • Kenya - Like 5 seconds with the sofa pillows vibrating
  • Dar es Salaam - Bottles shaked bit, bed shaked etc etc
  • Mombasa - Just very very light shaking. I almost didn't notice it.
  • Dar es salaam - No damage
  • loitokitok - shaking lasted about 10 seconds and there was a loud bang for about 15 seconds
  • Dar es Salaam - Strong shaking
  • Mombasa - I was sitting in the sofa and just felt house is shaking I thought because I’m feeling dizzy and then saw my lamp was shaking too ,I asked my husband he said no what are saying! Then heard all our neighbors were discussing so then I confirmed it’s an earthquake. #firsttimefeeling
  • Dar es salaam - 10 seconds table was shaking and I felt something was wrong with the building itself.
  • Dar es Salaam - Sitting outside, the ground gently oscillated 4-5 times forewards and back about two-three inches and suspended lamps swung to about 20-30’ inclination.
  • morogoro - Weak shaking
  • morogoro - Weak shaking
  • Dar es salaam - strong shaking felt the building moving ....
  • Dar es salaam - 10 sec...scarry movment
  • Dar es Salaam - I was just at home sitting on the couch and i felt the shaking
  • Dar es salaam - I felt like someone moved d my chair foward the next thung i felt a slight vibration just after a few seconds. Others on the top floors felt the same way too. There was a strong first vibration but a slight second one nothing is destructed. Thanks to God.
  • Zanzibar - Moderate shaking
  • Dar es salaam - Shaking lasted 1 min -
  • Zanzibar - A few seconds no damage
  • Dar es Salaam - Big heavy settee felt like a large wave passed underneath 15-20 secs followed quickly by feeling settee was collapsing and a couple of distant bangs. Then nothing. My dog barked ran outside. Crows nesting in a nearby tree started crawing for a few mins. An painting fell onto floor. Nothing since
  • dar es salaam - Dar es Salaam. Three very strong jolts felt through a chair I was sitting on, then light shaking for maybe 20 seconds.
  • Dar es Salaam - I was just at home , making my daughter sleep bed was shaking for about 15 seconds . It was scary but thank god no damage
  • Mombasa - I was sleeping and my bed started shaking which woke me up. The ground below my feet thereafter shook for about 2 seconds.
  • Dar es Salaam - Strong shaking
  • Dar Es Salaam - We were watching tv when suddenly our parrot fell down inside its cage and the Aquarium shook abit and the fishes all lied down and the aluminium door started shaking and so did the sofa and the chandelier. No damage to the property but we all are abit shakened up.
  • Temeke - Shaking for 2 minutes
  • Dar Es Salaam - I was in college 7th floor doing my assignments then I felt like the building was swinging for 3/4 seconds, suddenly I heard people shouts and running the stairs towards ground....I was really shocked because I had never seen the situation like that but nothing damaged from the shaking.
  • Dar es Salaam - It was 8 15 pm and the medical attendant was being administered intravenous antibiotic for leg infection. Suddenly I started to be bumping on the sofa and thought my grandson was pushing but then I also saw chandlers swinging and we reslised it was the first ever experience of a tremor. There was neither casualties or damage of any sort to the property.
  • Dar es Salaam - It was 8 15 pm and the medical attendant was being administered intravenous antibiotic for leg infection. Suddenly I started to be bumping on the sofa and thought my grandson was pushing but then I also saw chandlers swinging and we reslised it was the first ever experience of a tremor. There was neither casualties or damage of any sort to the property.
  • Dar Es Salaam - Strong shaking
  • zanzibar - Very strong shaking tremor bed,light and entire building shaking for less than 5 sec.
  • Dar es Salaam - My wife and I sat in the living room when we felt the tremor. We live in a 2 story house close to the beach, the first tremor shook the ceiling lights for about 5 seconds and a second tremor less than a minute from the first one shook the whole building, our kids were in their room getting ready to go to sleep, I ran in their room quick picked both of them up and ran outside with my wife. Thank God, we are ok. I'll Check for structural damage tomorrow.
  • Tanga - Moderate shaking
  • Dar es salaam - I have felt no damage thanks to god it takes to about 15 to 30sec i was on the coach sitting.
  • Dar Es Salaam - I was terrified, it lasted like 7 to 10 second
  • Mombasa - was seated..then felt like the sofa was moving.. lasted about 10 seconds
  • Dar Es Salaam - I was in a restaurant having dinner...and I felt my chair shake....I thought there was somebody behind me shaking my chair. I turned but there was nobody...I still continued for almost a second or 2...I looked at the ground and I could still see the movement. I thought I imagined it. Until I checked online. It probably lasted 3 to 4 seconds that I felt it. No visible damage
  • Dar es Salaam - Felt my bed moving. It was a strong tremor that lasted for about 5-10 seconds.
  • Dar es saalam - Lasted a few seconds. Was on my bed and felt a if someone was shaking it, the window was also vibrating then I went to the kitchen and found the water in the drum oscillating.
  • Kariakoo, Dar es Salaam - shaking for 30 seconds
  • Dar es salaam - Was on bed around 2015 hours when I felt the bed shaking vigorously. Due to past experience with earthquakes I guessed the shaking was due to earthquake. I went to the sitting room where my family was watching TV and saw the 9 -storey building was shaking as if it was falling. In 10-15 seconds the shaking stopped and all residents managed to evacuate. Alhamdulillaah there was no damage to people and properties.
  • Dar es Salaam - It started light then a sudden heavy shake then came very weak shake
  • Dar es salaam - Felt shaking of the ground and bed for about 2-3 seconds
  • Dar es salaam - I was in sitting room and felt vibration of glasses in cupboard . It started around 7.15pm and lasted for one minute.No damages experienced
  • Dar Es Salaam - At least 6 seconds or more. The floor was going up and down, no building damaged noticed yet. Other areas reported with moderate building damage
  • City - Very weak shaking
  • Dar es Salaam - Light shaking
  • Dar-es-Salaam - We felt the floor, tv, fridge shake for 10-15 seconds. I was terrified as I had never experienced an earthquake before and it was very unexpected for Dar-es-Salaam.
  • Mombasa - I'm on the 4th floor. I was lying on the sofa when I felt it sway. I wasn't sure what was going on. 5 seconds later my water dispenser which is against the wall swayed violently. I sreamt and fled downstairs. No damages.
  • EMSC Tanzania Aug 12 17:13 5.9 2 MAP

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    Other earthquakes in the greater epicenter area

    Strongest earthquakes (since 1900) within a 150 km radius from this earthquake


    I felt the shaking *
    Country where you felt the earthquake *
    City/Village where you felt the earthquake *
    Street or suburb (area) where you felt the earthquake
    Latitude (area) where you felt the earthquake
    Longitude (area) where you felt the earthquake
    Shaking Strength *
    MMI II (Very weak shaking) ?
    People :
    Felt by persons at rest, on upper floors or favorably placed.
    MMI III (Weak shaking) ?
    People :
    Felt indoors; hanging objects may swing, vibration similar to passing of light trucks, duration may be estimated, may not be recognized as an earthquake.
    MMI IV (Light shaking) ?
    People :
    Generally noticed indoors but not outside. Light sleepers may be awakened. Vibration may be likened to the passing of heavy traffic, or to the jolt of a heavy object falling or striking the building.
    Fittings :
    Doors and windows rattle. Glassware and crockery rattle. Liquids in open vessels may be slightly disturbed. Standing motorcars may rock.
    Structures :
    Walls and frames of buildings, and partitions and suspended ceilings in commercial buildings, may be heard to creak.
    MMI V (Moderate shaking) ?
    People :
    Generally felt outside, and by almost everyone indoors. Most sleepers awakened. A few people alarmed.
    Fittings :
    Small unstable objects are displaced or upset. Some glassware and crockery may be broken. Hanging pictures knock against the wall. Open doors may swing. Cupboard doors secured by magnetic catches may open. Pendulum clocks stop, start, or change rate.
    Structures :
    Some large display windows cracked. A few earthenware toilet fixtures cracked.
    MMI VI (Strong shaking) ?
    People Felt by all. People and animals alarmed. Many run outside. Difficulty experienced in walking steadily.
    Fittings :
    Objects fall from shelves. Pictures fall from walls. Some furniture moved on smooth floors, some unsecured free-standing fireplaces moved. Glassware and crockery broken. Very unstable furniture overturned. Small church and school bells ring. Appliances move on bench or table tops. Filing cabinets or "easy glide" drawers may open (or shut).
    Structures :
    Slight damage to buildings with low standard. Some stucco or cement plaster falls. Large display windows broken. Damage to a few weak domestic chimneys, some may fall.
    Environment :
    Trees and bushes shake, or are heard to rustle. Loose material may be dislodged from sloping ground, e.g. existing slides, talus slopes, shingle slides.
    MMI VII (Very strong shaking) ?
    General alarm. Difficulty experienced in standing. Noticed by motorcar drivers who may stop.
    Fittings :
    Large bells ring. Furniture moves on smooth floors, may move on carpeted floors. Substantial damage to fragile contents of buildings.
    Structures :
    Unreinforced stone and brick walls cracked. Low standard buildings cracked with some minor masonry falls. A few instances of damage to buildings of ordinary workmanship. Unbraced parapets, unbraced brick gables, and architectural ornaments fall. Roofing tiles, especially ridge tiles may be dislodged. Many unreinforced domestic chimneys damaged, often falling from roof-line. Water tanks Type I burst. A few instances of damage to brick veneers and plaster or cement-based linings. Unrestrained water cylinders (hot-water cylinders) may move and leak. Some common windows cracked. Suspended ceilings damaged.
    Environment :
    Water made turbid by stirred up mud. Small slides such as falls of sand and gravel banks, and small rock-falls from steep slopes and cuttings. Instances of settlement of unconsolidated or wet, or weak soils. Some fine cracks appear in sloping ground. A few instances of liquefaction (i.e. small water and sand ejections).
    MMI VIII (Severe shaking) ?
    People Alarm may approach panic. Steering of motorcars greatly affected. Structures : Low standard buildings heavily damaged, some collapse. ordinary workmanship buildings damaged, some with partial collapse. Reinforced masonry or concrete buildings damaged in some cases. A few instances of damage to buildings and bridges designed and built to resist earthquakes. Monuments and pre-1976 elevated tanks and factory stacks twisted or brought down. Some pre-1965 infill masonry panels damaged. A few post-1980 brick veneers damaged. Decayed timber piles of houses damaged. Houses not secured to foundations may move. Most unreinforced domestic chimneys damaged, some below roof-line, many brought down. Environment : Cracks appear on steep slopes and in wet ground. Small to moderate slides in roadside cuttings and unsupported excavations. Small water and sand ejections and localized lateral spreading adjacent to streams, canals, lakes, etc.
    MMI IX (Violent shaking) ?
    Structures Many low standard buildings destroyed. Ordinary workmanship buildings heavily damaged, some collapse. Reinforced masonry or concrete buildings damaged, some with partial collapse. Buildings and bridges designed and built to resist earthquakes damaged in some cases, some with flexible frames seriously damaged. Damage or permanent distortion to some buildings and bridges, designed and built to normal use standards. Houses not secured to foundations shifted off. Brick veneers fall and expose frames. Environment : Cracking of ground conspicuous. Landsliding general on steep slopes. Liquefaction effects intensified and more widespread, with large lateral spreading and flow sliding adjacent to streams, canals, lakes, etc.
    Tell us your experience and how many seconds the shaking lasted + let us know if your property has been damaged (even slight damage). (max. 500 characters)
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